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I got a "word of the day" from a website where I subscribe. It was 'froid'. The sentence included "très froid". When I listened to the native speaker say the sentence, I heard not "tray frwah" (sorry for the unofficial pronunciation attempt) that I would have expected, but "trays frwah".

I understand that due to liaisons, one puts the consonant "back" before vowels. Why is it back in this case?

Thanks, Janet (B1 ranking -- which means I have a LOT to learn. Any help appreciated.)

  • Simply put, consonants remove the aspect of "liaisons". Therefor, you don't prononce the S in Très in that case. Although, in something like "Très aimé" you will have a "liaison" and will pronounce the S (will sound like Z) in Très. – Sifu Dec 15 '15 at 16:37
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    Is it this site? I can see how one could easily hear an "s" there, but I think it's really just the "f". – mlj Dec 15 '15 at 16:39
  • Yes, that's the site, and you could be right. "s" and "f" (like 50 and 60, in english) are problems for me so I could just be hearing things. Thanks for responding! – JMACleve Dec 15 '15 at 17:48
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The 'S' here isn't pronounced. What you are hearing is the beginning of the 'f' (or maybe some audio glitches).

-1

The s of très is silent. Pretend like you are saying tre froid. Remember the CaReFuL rule. If a French word ends in C, R, F or L (the letters in CaReFuL), the final letter is pronounced. The s in très is silent since it does not follow the rule. Of course there are exceptions just like other rules that also have exceptions.

Hope this helps!

  • Eh, never heard of that rule before. Clever. – Paul Picard Jan 2 '16 at 9:27
  • Where does this rule come from? We never pronounce the final C in accroc neither the final L in fusil – Toto Jan 2 '16 at 9:42
  • R is almost never pronounced in words ending in -er... – GAM PUB Jan 2 '16 at 11:30
  • Some exceptions: croc, cerf, fusil, and all verbs ending with 'er' – Francois Jan 6 '16 at 15:07

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